Chapter Thirteen,

Go! Go! Gryffindor!…

Harry felt confident in his decision to wait to talk to Sirius at the holiday break. After all, even if he could find a way to express his thoughts and questions into a coherent letter, he doubted very much that anything his godfather sent back would answer half of what was swirling around his mind. Harry felt significantly less confident about having to keep his knowledge of Sirius' innocence to himself though. Nora had gone all her life believing that her father was a monster, something that Harry could tell weighed heavily on her. Finding out that he was innocent all along would surely remove some of that burden? But on the other hand, Sirius had (to the best of Harry's knowledge) purposely hidden the fact that he had a daughter, one that was the same age as Harry. Why would he do that without a very good reason? He had been here at Hogwarts in Third Year, and hadn't sought her out to tell her the truth, maybe there was something Harry was missing?

No matter which way you looked at it, he was stuck between a rock and a hard place. In the beginning, Harry had worried that it would affect their budding relationship, however, if anything, it had brought them closer together! With Harry going out of his way to make sure that Nora knew that he didn't care about her heritage, and for her part Nora was quite content to pretend that the whole conversation had never even occurred.

They were still tiptoeing around their 'relationship', much to Harry's ever growing frustration. It wasn't like he was confused about his feelings, he fancied Eleanora, a lot! And he would bet his Firebolt that she felt the same way, that wasn't the issue. The issue was that every time he even thought about bringing up his feelings for her, or their previous kisses, or that fact that he was pretty sure that she could ask the world of him and he'd find a way to give it to her…he would choke. Sometimes literally! His tongue would double in size as his throat seemed to shrink, and he had to use his very limited concentration to not splutter and make a fool of himself.

Harry had come to the very reasonable and logical conclusion that, to put it very simply… he was allergic to feelings.

His, already difficult situation was hardly helped by the ridiculous prejudices that dominated every aspect of Hogwarts, even their small club. You see, the first quidditch match of the year between Gryffindor and Slytherin was fast approaching, and each day that drew them closer to the match also intensified the already heightened rivalries of Slytherin versus… well the rest of the school.

Harry had thought that Eleanora's first meeting had been intense, but that was like feeding a browntruckle compared to the atmosphere in the last DA lesson. Everyone had reverted back to the default of being tense and wary of the resident Slytherin in the group, Seamus even had the gall to accuse her of trying to distract Harry!

He hotly suggested that she was trying to throw Harry off his game to give her team a better shot of winning, and that she was trying to gather information to give to the Slytherin team to beat Gryffindor… and this outburst occurred all because she had asked Harry how he was feeling! Of course Eleanora denied any and all accusations with grace, dignity and only a small amount of contempt (which Harry privately thought was a minor miracle really), but it did nothing to abate the suspicions of the others. Even the Weasley twins had given her a wide berth last lesson, that had hurt her far more than any words someone could throw at her.

. . .

However, after some extensive thought and a rather unfortunate incident in the Slytherin common room after dinner tonight, Eleanora had come to the decision to take action and stop this nonsense before it escalated any further.

Storming into the DA classroom she was a woman on a mission, letting the door slam behind her as she scanned the room, eyes blazing and entire demeanour screaming; mess with me right now and you forfeit your right to live. She quickly spotted her prey and began her march, people parting like the red sea to avoid her wrath, towards the Weasley twins who currently bore a strong resemblance to deer caught in headlights.

"Listen carefully both of you, I am sick of being treated like I have some sort of disease. I was under the assumption that we were something like friends and I refuse to let this ridiculousness go on any further! I had planned on staying out of all this Quidditch rubbish because I honestly don't give a damn, but a very recent turn of events has made it… beneficial to change my mind. The Slytherin Quidditch team has replaced their Beaters with Crabbe and Goyle from my year, and if you could find a legal way to pummel them relentlessly, I would consider it a personal favour." She finished her rant with a huff of air that seemed to expel her remaining anger.

And although she hadn't raised her voice once during this confrontation, the authority in which she spoke made everyone stop and listen.

After a small delay as everyone around them processed this new information and new demeanour of the previously reserved Slytherin girl, the twins grimaced simultaneously as they thought about their recent actions.

"We're sorry,"

"We really are friends-"

"And thanks for the tip…"

"…But why do you want them pummelled in particular?"

They asked curiously. Eleanora smiled her best, what she liked to call, Slytherin smile. It was really just a curl of her lips and a look in her eyes that gave the impression that she was plotting something sinister, giving her an overall appearance of looking dangerous and frightening. It was something she took a lot of pride in, occasionally. It certainly had the desired effect as she uttered the next words.

"Oh, just for the usual, vindictive reasons…"

Spinning on her heel to face Harry she asked in her sweetest voice,

"Are we ready to start?"

. . .

And that was that really. Everyone went back to normal around Eleanora, her betrayal of her own house in something a serious as Quidditch enough for them to finally understand that she was on their side after all.

Eleanora practically skipped back to her common room later that night, having left alongside everyone else instead of staying back with Harry, she may be in the good books of the DA for the moment but she didn't want to push her luck.

She felt a little bad at leaving him, she knew Harry was particularly stressed about this upcoming game, with Weasley being a shoddy and unpredictable Keeper at best, and he could have probably used a distraction. But there were things that required her attention back in the Slytherin common room that she couldn't talk to Harry about, not yet anyway, besides it was unhealthy to get so worked up over a silly game!

Composing herself and replacing the genuine smile on her face with one that conveyed her supposed superiority, Eleanora entered her common room. She could feel the attention on her as she stepped through the portrait hole, even though there wasn't a single eye on her. Ignoring the attention she made a casual glance around the room, taking note of Draco and a few others from the quidditch team huddled together, and spotting Daphne in a chair by the fire.

"How's Trace?" Eleanora asked quietly as she took the seat next to her friend and made sure no-one was in earshot of their conversation.

"Still sulking, she won't even let me remove the curse stupid girl, tough luck to her if she asks me to do it later." Daphne replied flippantly, seemingly unconcerned as she carefully painted her nails in deep emerald.

"And the atmosphere?" Although she could sense herself the tension, and see how everyone was a bit too stiff in their positions and a bit too quiet in their conversations. Daphne had always had an ability to feel the environment and understand the mood of a room on a deeper level, although if you were ever to utter the word 'seer' in her presence you would be liable to lose a limb.

"Absolutely crackling. I mean it's just poor form to curse one of your own, everyone knows that. We'll gain from this for sure." She answered casually as she capped the lid of her varnish and took out her wand to dry her fingers.

"Draco and the others?" Eleanora asked, trying to glance in their direction without making it obvious that she was looking. They were still huddled together and laughing, the only people in the common room seemingly unaffected by the tension, or just didn't care.

"They don't seem concerned at all, the idiots.I mean they're definitely plotting something, but I don't think it's a campaign against us." Daphne said with a sneer aimed in their direction.

"Yeah, well I think we should campaign ourselves, this… whatever, between Harry and I has to come out sooner rather than later." Eleanora decided, looking to her best friend for approval. Daphne nodded with a sly smile,

"I agree, people already notice that you leave the common room a lot on your own, better they think you're snogging Potter than dig up the truth."

"Daph!" Eleanora hadn't meant to raise her voice so high and chastised herself internally for her blunder. Knowing that anything else they said would be listened to, both girls simultaneously rose from their seats and walked into their dormitories.

"Don't look so scandalised dear, I know it's what you'd rather be doing! And I think it'll help us, if people think you've got Dumbledore's 'Chosen One' in your pocket they'll be more willing to come around to our way of thinking." Daphne said reasonably once they were out of earshot from the common room. Eleanora rolled her eyes and went over to Tracey's bed to see how the other girl was feeling, refusing to say anymore on the subject…mostly because she couldn't argue with anything Daphne had said.

. . .

The day of the Gryffindor - Slytherin quidditch match dawned bright and cold in early December and Eleanora woke with a feeling of utter dread and despair. Last night Draco had unveiled his 'masterpiece' including lyric sheets and badges for every single Slytherin member, it had been far too late for her to leave the common room unnoticed and she doubted that she could have spoken to Harry anyway.

She dressed quickly, pulling her curls into low pigtails to keep them from getting windswept later during the game and to offer her poor ears some protection from the bitter cold, promising herself that she would finally order some new earmuffs this week.

Shoving Daphne, somewhat gently, out of bed and prodding her to get dressed Eleanora noted that they were actually the last girls left in the dorm, customarily sleeping in on quidditch days because neither one of them had any real interest in the sport. She desperately hoped she could catch Harry before he left to get changed, forewarned is forearmed right?

They made their way to the great hall in record time, Daphne roughly shoving past Eleanora to sit at the Slytherin table, still a little bitter at being woken up so early, as Eleanora chose to linger at the entrance, eyes scanning the hall for familiar black hair. Initially a great deal of panic swelled inside her when she realised that he wasn't there, that she was too late, until she noticed the Weasley twins were still there along with other members of the team.

Some, here-to-fore, useless part of her brain supplied that usually quidditch teams left the great hall together to get changed, something about showing unity, and that Harry just hadn't come down for breakfast yet which calmed her immensely.

For some 20 minutes Eleanora lingered at the entrance of the great hall, feeling awkward but knowing it would cause more of a scene if she were to sit down at the Slytherin table and then get up and talk to Harry. When he suddenly appeared, guiding an inferi-like Ron in the right direction. Harry didn't notice her at first until she caught his arm and he stopped, Ron continuing on in his trajectory to the table not even noticing that Harry had let go of him.

Harry didn't even smile at the sight of her, going immediately to concerned because something had to be seriously wrong for her to grab him like this with so many of her people about.

"Hey, what's wrong?" He asked, voicing his concern immediately, not knowing how much time they would get before they were interrupted, well-aware that they were in full view of everyone in the Hall and it was only a moment of time before someone said something.

"Look, is there any way to make Ron deaf for, say… the duration of the match? Draco revealed last night that he's a songwriter now and he made up a ridiculous song specifically to taunt Ron, there are badges and everything!" She hissed, subtly showing him the crown badge she had clenched in her hand.

"I know he's already having a hard time, and I don't want my house making it worse for him!" Eleanora explained.

Okay, so maybe she was stretching the truth, she really didn't care that Weasley was a sensitive prat and would have gladly sung along. Except for the unfortunate fact that he was Harry friend, and it would reflect badly on her if she didn't show some level of concern for the people he cared about, as much as it drained her to do so.

Harry, fortunately oblivious to her internal monologue, smiled brilliantly at her.

"Thanks Nora, you're the best. I'll let him know about it."

. . .

Later, when asked about this moment, Eleanora would fully and completely blame Harry Potter and his stupid smile for what happened next.

That smile, the one that made the sun shine and the birds sing and made Eleanora Black completely forget herself and her sensibilities, and the boy behind it were fully responsible for her actions when she took a step closer and kissed him.

. . .

They broke apart when the wolf-whistles started, led, of course, by the Weasley twins. Other members of the DA followed suit with clapping a cheering while those that had no idea the Harry and Eleanora even knew each other whispered feverishly with their table mates.

Eleanora didn't dare let her eyes stray to her own table, knowing for sure that there would be a few faces that resembled sour lemons.

Looking up into Harry's eyes she could see that he was just as surprised with her very public actions. She managed to squeak out; 'good luck' in a voice that was far too breathy and girly for her liking and he smiled at her again, and Eleanora seriously needed to have a word with this boy about that smile… it was starting to become a problem.

Subconsciously her eye roved to the Slytherin table, she spotted Daphne smirking so hard Eleanora worried for a moment that she might be doing permanent damage to her face. Only a few seats down she also spotted Draco, who looked ready to blow his top, and yeah…she was absolutely going to hear about this after the match, and she wasn't going to enjoy it. Harry followed her gaze and saw Draco's expression, squeezing her waist in a reassuring way. Unintentionally alerting her to the fact that at some point during the, fairly brief, kiss they had wrapped themselves together, and honestly Eleanora wasn't sure she could get anymore embarrassed.

Before any outburst could occur, thankfully, the Gryffindor team took that moment to leave the Hall and prepare for the match. Also forcing Slytherin team to do the same.

As they passed, Eleanora stepped out of the embrace to avoid being swept up with the team. Angelina shoved a piece of toast at Harry on her way past, everyone else giving him cheers of encouragement and slaps on the back that left Eleanora wondering if she should be offended or flattered that they found it so hard to believe she and Harry had ended up together.

"How long have you and Potter been shagging huh?" Pansy Parkinson sneered when Eleanora sat down. Fully expecting this and not missing a beat Eleanora retorted primly;

"Just because you'll give it away to any bloke that asks Pansy doesn't mean we all stoop so low. Some of us have better breading than that I suppose…" She watched the girl splutter in indignation with a practiced expression of contempt on her face.

Eleanora knew that everyone left at the Slytherin table was watching her right now, and she had to make her lack of tolerance for these kinds of accusations clear or she would quickly lose respect. She had to be ruthless, something she quite enjoyed on occasion.

Buttering her toast as Daphne poured her a cup of tea, Eleanora felt that uncomfortable feeling of being watched. Giving in to the temptation she glance around in the direction of the uncomfortable sensation, the Head Table, there she found the source of the feeling. Headmaster Dumbledore was watching her with the most peculiar look on his face, Eleanora was unable to decipher it as he looked away the moment she caught his gaze, but none-the-less it left her feeling uncomfortable.

. . .

After a tense, and record-breakingly quick breakfast Eleanora and Daphne went back to the common room to grab their cloaks and scarves, before heading down to the pitch, Daphne complaining the entire time.

"Why'd you have to date a quidditch player huh? Now you're going to turn into one of those girls who goes to every match and actually knows the rules and thinks it's an interesting sport and not just idiots on brooms throwing a ball and hitting each other. And honestly Nora, I'm just going to have to stop being friends with you if you get like that…"

"Daph, I have no intention of being one of those girls and you have my full permission to admit me to Mungo's if I ever become one. This is a one off match because I feel bad about not warning him about the singing earlier. He's in for a nasty shock if he thinks I'll be freezing my ass of all year watching his stupid games." Eleanora declared as they passed the gates of the stadium, stopping to buy 2 pasties and a bag of popcorn for later, the lines always got ridiculous after the game had started.

"So big question of the day, you're wearing house colours but are you supporting Slytherin team today?" Daphne asked mockingly as Eleanora paid for their treats and they trudged up the stairs.

"Don't be stupid! Of course I'm not supporting Slytherin, you aren't either!" Eleanora said with a laugh as they passed a group of Hufflepuff girls who scattered as they approached. Daphne snorted but nodded her head, it wasn't spoken about,

(Then again nothing ever is in their house, reading subtle signs is how you learn to survive.)

but ever since it was declared that girls would never be allowed to try out for the house team, support for Slytherin from the fairer sex had…evaporated.

They took seats that faced the middle of the pitch, Eleanora felt that this was the most unbiased position she could take, halfway between the Slytherin goals and the Gryffindor ones.

If she had the patience for deep contemplation, she would consider this a metaphor for her life, however she really didn't. Instead she thought about how uncomfortable these seats were already and how she was going to last an entire game.

Her internal whining was halted by a small girl in Slytherin robes who came skipping up to them.

"Hiya! Where are your badges? I heard Draco spent heaps having them made." She asked sweetly, straightening her own badge that was pinned to her robes. Daphne rolled her eyes,

"Threw them away, serves the git right. He should be spending his money on Quidditch lessons they way I hear he plays. Has he even won a game?" She sneered, knowing it would get under the girl's skin.

"Don't insult my future husband like that! He may be rubbish at Quidditch, but he looks good while trying, and that's the main thing really." Astoria Greengrass, Daphne's baby sister, had been crushing on Draco since the Malfoy Christmas Ball of 1991 when he had asked her to dance.

(Or as Daphne described it, his mother had forced him to dance with every girl under the age of 17.)

"Don't let Pansy hear you talking like that, you'll wake up bald tomorrow." Eleanora said with a laugh, she enjoyed having Astoria around, she was a burst of energy, despite her infatuation with Draco.

"So, who are you barracking for to win?" Astoria asked as the stands started to fill up around them.

"Gryffindor of course! Do me a favour Tori and don't sing along." Eleanora asked the younger girl.

"Why? Are you dating Weasley too?" She asked innocently as Daphne started to choke with laughter beside her.

"You know what, never-mind Tor. Go find your friends." Eleanora said waving the little girl away with an eye-roll, she was being deliberately unhelpful, one of Astoria's favourite thing to do.

With a cheeky wink and a wave Tori ran back to where she had left her friends, although Eleanora noticed her take off her badge and slip it into her pocket, her friends copying a few moments later.

The cheering intensified as the teams took to the pitch, shook hands and then shot off to their positions as the balls were released. Both Harry and Draco taking off to opposite sides of the pitch and starting to circle in a way that reminded Eleanora eerily of vultures as Lee Jordan began to commentate on the action;

"And it's Johnson, Johnson with the Quaffle, what a player that girl is, I've been saying it for years but she still won't go out with me —"

"JORDAN!" yelled Professor McGonagall.

"Just a fun fact, Professor, adds a bit of interest. Speaking of fun facts, Eleanora Black, a Slytherin with a Gryffindor boyfriend…wonder who she'll be supporting today…!"

Eleanora, who's cheeks were a deep pink, could hear McGonagall yelling at Lee but she had pulled the microphone away. Whatever she said had caused the boy to focus back on the game, something Eleanora was extremely grateful for.

"— and Johnson's ducked Warrington, she's passed Montague, she's — ouch — been hit from behind by a Bludger from Crabbe. . . . Montague catches the Quaffle, Montague heading back up the pitch and — nice Bludger there from George Weasley, that's a Bludger to the head for Montague, he drops the Quaffle, caught by Katie Bell, Katie Bell of Gryffindor reverse passes to Alicia Spinnet and Spinnet's away —"

Lee Jordan's commentary rang through the stadium as Eleanora found herself enthralled in the atmosphere of the game, so much so that she almost didn't mind that she was sitting on a frozen bench seat in winter… almost. The cheering and booing was deafening as the players zoomed through the air far quicker than she would ever be comfortable with, so she couldn't even really hear the singing coming from the Slytherin section, she silently prayed that the players couldn't hear it either.

"— dodges Warrington, avoids a Bludger — close call, Alicia — and the crowd are loving this, just listen to them, what's that they're singing?"

Eleanora buried her head in her palms, had she really just jinxed herself!

And as Lee paused to listen, the song rose loud and clear from the sea of green and silver in the Slytherin section of the stands:

Weasley cannot save a thing, He cannot block a single ring, That's why Slytherins all sing: Weasley is our King.

Weasley was born in a bin,

He always lets the Quaffle in, Weasley will make sure we win, Weasley is our King.

"— and Alicia passes back to Angelina!" Lee shouted trying desperately to drown out the voices coming from the Green and Sliver section, but it was far too late now, Eleanora thought grimly. The Slytherin's had been given momentum, there was no drowning them out now, she could only hope that the game ended quickly from here.

"Come on now, Angelina — looks like she's got just the Keeper to beat! — SHE SHOOTS — SHE — aaaah . . ."

The Slytherin Keeper, had caught the ball; he threw it to… Warrington? Possibly. Who sped off with it, zigzagging in between two of the Gryffindor girls; the singing from the stands grew louder and louder as he drew nearer and nearer to Weasley —

Weasley is our King,

Weasley is our King,

He always lets the Quaffle in, Weasley is our King.

"— and it's Warrington with the Quaffle, Warrington heading for goal, he's out of Bludger range with just the Keeper ahead —"

A great swell of song rose from the Slytherin stands:

Weasley cannot save a thing,

He cannot block a single ring . . .

"— so it's the first test for new Gryffindor Keeper, Weasley, brother of Beaters, Fred and George, and a promising new talent on the team — come on, Ron!"

But the scream of delight came from the Slytherin end: Weasley had dived wildly, his arms flailing, and the ball had soared between them, even Eleanora could tell an easy goal.

"Slytherin score!" came Lee's voice amid the cheering and booing from the crowd. "So that's ten-nil to Slytherin — bad luck, Ron . . ."

Eleanora looked to the sky, searching for black messy hair, spotting him easily as he was stationary in the midair seemingly watching the game rather than searching for the snitch, was that normal? Apparently not, for only a few seconds later Angelina sped towards him and shouted… something, whatever it was made Harry take off and start circling the pitch again.

"— and Gryffindor back in possession and it's Katie Bell tanking up the pitch —" cried Lee valiantly,

"— and it's Warrington again," bellowed Lee, "who passes to Pucey, Pucey's off past Spinnet, come on now Angelina, you can take him — turns out you can't — but nice Bludger from Fred Weasley, I mean, George Weasley, oh who cares, one of them anyway, and Warrington drops the Quaffle and Katie Bell — er — drops it too — so that's Montague with the Quaffle, Slytherin Captain Montague takes the Quaffle, and he's off up the pitch, come on now Gryffindor, block him!"

Eleanora crossed her gloved fingers and wished for something, anything that that would turn the tide for Gryffindor. She was already calculating how many people in the DA would blame her for this spectacular loss, and possibly label her kiss with Harry as bad luck!

"— and Pucey's dodged Alicia again, and he's heading straight for goal, stop it, Ron!"

Eleanora did not have to look to see what had happened: There was a terrible groan from the Gryffindor end, coupled with fresh screams and applause from the Slytherins. Looking over, she saw a smug-faced Pansy Parkinson right at the front of the stands, her back to the pitch as she conducted the Slytherin supporters who were absolutely roaring now:


"— and Katie Bell of Gryffindor dodges Pucey, ducks Montague, nice swerve, Katie, and she throws to Johnson, Angelina Johnson takes the Quaffle, she's past Warrington, she's heading for goal, come on now Angelina — GRYFFINDOR SCORE! It's forty-ten, forty- ten to Slytherin and Pucey has the Quaffle. . . ."

Eleanora stifled a cheer but could do nothing to stop the grin on her face, finally! Even Daphne gave a quiet squeal beside her, Eleanora turned to face her friend with a raised eyebrow.

"Oh don't start! I'm not starting to like quidditch, I just have a vested interest in this particular game. I don't want to listen to you whine if they lose!" She spat although Eleanora could tell that there was no malice in her words. She just shook her head and turned her attention back to the commentary, because Merlin knows that she would have no idea what was going on without it.

"— Pucey throws to Warrington, Warrington to Montague, Montague back to Pucey — Johnson intervenes, Johnson takes the Quaffle, Johnson to Bell, this looks good — I mean bad — Bell's hit by a Bludger from Goyle of Slytherin and it's Pucey in possession again . . ."

Her attention was quickly diverted as she saw Harry start to free-fall from the sky, initially worried that something was wrong Eleanora stood up, hand clutching her chest in panic. Then Draco followed Harry down and she realised that they must have seen the Snitch, everyone else had also noticed as the two boys streaked towards the foot of the Slytherin goalposts. Everyone was screaming, even Lee on the microphone, but Eleanora could hardly care what they were saying, she was cheering as she kept her eyes firmly focused on the boy of her affections, as if her gaze could push him forward to beat out Malfoy.

And he did it! Harry pulled up at the last moment, fist clenched around a tiny object, he got it! That meant Gryffindor won right?! Judging by the cheering from the Gryffindor end and the booing from the Slytherin side, Eleanora was pretty positive that they had one, but she could hardly take her eyes off of the grinning boy holding the Snitch, oh lord that smile…


Harry was propelled forward and off of his broom, Eleanora screamed in fright as he fell, fortunately only about 5 feet and landed flat on his back. A whistle sounded but Eleanora couldn't tear her eyes away from Harry until he was pulled to his feet by Angelina, until she was sure that he was okay.

She then noticed Madame Hooch yelling at Crabbe and pointing at his bat, well, that was certainly something she would have to take care of later, Eleanora made a mental note.

Everyone was descending the stands, no doubt to pre-planned celebration/commiseration parties as both teams hit the ground. Eleanora and Daphne gathered their uneaten food before following the crowds to the exit, she took one last look at the pitch and noticed that there was some sort of scuffle going on, but was swept out of view before she could get a good look. Not that it mattered, it wouldn't be too serious with teachers everywhere.

. . .

So, as it happens, it was serious. Daphne and Eleanora had settled down at one of the study tables intent on getting ahead with their homework before the weekend. There was no party, the song hadn't worked and there was a slight air of upset in the common-room, hardly unusual after a defeat, and hardly uncommon considering the standard of the Slytherin team.

Suddenly Draco burst in wearing a smile that was quite bold for the person who had essentially performed the worst during the match today.

"Potter is banned for life!" He crowed in victory, the rest of the team trailing in behind him wearing smiles and looks of joy. There were gasps and laughs as people took in the news, Eleanora sat very still in her seat, her face betraying none of her thoughts as she waited for Draco to elaborate as she knew he would.

"What happened?" Pansy asked gleefully for her.

"Stupid Potter attacked me after the game in full view of the teachers, the idiot. And the beaters tried to help him so I had Umbridge ban them all for life! The quidditch cup is as good as ours!" There were cheers as what Draco had said sunk in. They may have lost the game but they were sure that they would win the cup and that was enough for a celebration to begin.

Eleanora felt numb, and she certainly didn't want to celebrate. She began packing up her supplies, Daphne following her friend's lead without question, they started making their way towards the dormitories until Eleanora stopped in her tracks.

"Daph, can you take my stuff to the room? I'm going for a walk." She asked already passing over her things. Daphne nodded reluctantly, not wanting her friend wandering the castle alone after everything that had been revealed today.

Eleanora smiled to reassure her friend before turning and walking towards the portrait hole, she accidentally made eye-contact with Draco who was lounging on a couch, surrounded by friends. She maintained eye-contact for just a moment, enough to assert her dominance, before turning her back on him; a risky move as it left her open to being cursed, something she knew Draco wasn't opposed to doing, but she was confident enough that he wouldn't have the balls to curse her.

She made it through the portrait hole without incident, but she quickly ran down the few corridors to the main entrance, just in case he tried to follow her.

Finally free, Eleanora wandered aimlessly through the castle, no clear destination in mind until she realised that she was in the tower that housed Gryffindor common-room. She wondered how much of a party would be going on with three of their best players now banned for life? And considering it was Slytherin that got them banned, she doubted very much if she would be welcome if she were to announce her presence.

As if the castle were reading her thoughts, she turned the corner and bumped into Ronald Weasley.

Twice couldn't be a coincidence could it?

As soon as he recognised her he sneered;

"Are you hear to gloat? I bet you're so happy that Gryffindor are down three players, improves Slytherin's chances for winning the Quidditch cup!" He spat angrily, and Eleanora knew that he was probably far more angry at himself and his performance than anything else, and she should probably take pity on him. But something about this boy just rubbed her the wrong way, so instead of an apology she settled for;

"Do I look like someone who gives a damn about a stupid trophy Weasley?" she asked sarcastically, which only served to make the redhead angrier.

"I can't wait till Harry sees you're nothing but a dirty snake!" He snarled, and something about that particular insult made Eleanora snap as she raised her hand and slapped the stupid boy, hard.

Instead of retorting, Weasley made the smart decision to turn around and storm into his common-room, rubbing his cheek as he did so.

Figuring that he was as likely to tell Harry that she was out here as Umbridge riding a unicorn, Eleanora turned to leave thinking about hanging out in the DA room until curfew. She went to turn the same corner and bumped into yet another Gryffindor, this was starting to become problematic.

Fortunately this Gryffindor was younger than her, and in the DA. Collin, she thought his name was. He greeted her enthusiastically enough, which was something of a refreshing change, and asked if she would like him to get Harry for her.

She thought about declining and just walking away, she didn't know what kind of mood Harry would be in and if he would even want to see her. But Collin would probably tell him she had been outside anyway and it could get awkward if she said no, so she decided to smile gratefully and thank the boy who was already halfway to the portrait.

Seemingly instantly, Harry's head popped out of the portrait hole, grinning as he located her leaning casually against a wall. He clambered into the corridor and walked over to lean next to her.

"So, I take it you're responsible for Ron's foul temper…and the mark on his cheek?" He asked, sounding very amused, which Eleanora took as a good sign.

"I'm sorry Harry, he just rubs me the wrong way! I know he's your friend, but we just seem to bring out the worst in each other." She apologised, trying to sound sincere. Harry didn't seem too concerned, waving away her apology as unnecessary.

"Don't worry about it, he'd be in a foul mood anyway. It's way too easy to set him off, I'm just glad it wasn't my fault for a change!" Harry explained with a laugh, was that a crack Eleanora detected? Well, this would take some further investigating! Maybe she could get rid of Weasley after all.

They watched in silence as a few more Gryffindor's trickled down the corridor and into the common room before Harry grabbed her hand and pulled her down a hallway she hadn't noticed before, he opened the door closest to them and checked for signs of life before pulling her inside. It was an old classroom and far more private than the well travelled corridor, Harry still hadn't let go of her hand so Eleanora laced their fingers together, something that caused both of them to smile.

"I'm sorry about your ban, Draco was bragging about it in the common room. I don't think my good luck kiss was very lucky after all…" She apologised, swinging their entwined hands.

"I respectfully disagree, nothing life-threatening happened to me during the game so I think they are very lucky!" He argued with a smile.

"You fell off your broom!" She pointed out incredulously.

"Only a few feet!" Harry said, waving his free hand dismissively,

"Hardly life-threatening, so they are lucky! Speaking of life-threatening injuries thought; Angelina may tear me limb-from-limb when she finds me for getting banned for life, so I may be in need of some extra luck…?" He said, wiggling his eyebrows suggestively, making Eleanora laugh.

Leaning forward she presses their lips together, and sure they absolutely need to talk about this.

Half the school saw them locking lips only this morning and the rest surely would have heard about it by now.

But in this moment Eleanora felt happy, really truly happy, and she didn't want to ruin it by having the 'what are we' conversation. It could wait for another day.

Seconds turned to minutes until air became a necessity, pulling away Harry regretfully untangled them.

"I'll go grab my cloak so I can walk you back, curfew is any minute now." He said, slipping away and into his common room as Eleanora took the opportunity to catch her breath and fix her appearance so as to not look so… dishevelled.

Harry returned barely a moment later, cloak in hand, and immediately entwined their fingers agin.

They walked in comfortable silence down to Eleanora's common room, happy just to be in each-other's presence without any quidditch rivalries or other drama to interfere.

Turning the last corner Eleanora suppressed a jump of fright. There, seemingly waiting for them, was her Head of House. Professor Snape looked distinctly unimpressed at the sight of them, pointedly glancing at their joined hands, but Eleanora did not let go of Harry. The three stood in tense silence for a moment before the Professor spoke;

"Mr. Potter, I suggest you hurry back to your common room if you intend on not breaking curfew. Miss Black, I would like a word with you in my office before you retire for the night." He turned and stalked down the hall into his office, Eleanora let go of Harry's hand the instant the Professor had turned around and began to follow her Head of House. She felt a hand on her arm and turned to see Harry's worried face, she smiled a tight lipped smile that offered no real reassurance, but it was all she could manage in the circumstances.

"I'll see you tomorrow yeah? Care of Magical Creatures." She said, kissing his cheek softly before walking into Professor Snape's office.






AN: Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday Daughter of Darkness, happy birthday to you!

One year old this month! Oh. My. Gosh, words cannot even begin to describe the way I currently feel. When I first started this story it was a little idea that wouldn't leave my head until I wrote it down and sent it out into the world, one year and over 25,000 views later I am so humbled and grateful for the love and support everyone on this site has given me.

Every time I am in need of a confidence boost or feeling a little down, an alert pings letting me know that someone new has found my story and likes it enough to want to be updated. The biggest of thank-you's to everyone who has ever viewed, commented, followed or favourited this story and has stuck with me and my inconsistent updating! I love each and every one of you dearly, you have no idea!

There are a few more bends in the story that is Harry & Eleanora and I hope you enjoy the rest of this story as much as you have the beginning.

All of the love I possess goes to you,

Wendy xx

One year. No change. The HP universe belongs to JK Rowling, I'm just playing in it.